The good life. What comes to mind when you hear these words? What do you picture? Maybe vacations, or success, or putting your feet up and taking a nap, or tons of money. I think of waking up each morning with a smile and loving words from others. While the ultimate ‘good life’ is waiting for us with Jesus – in a place with no sickness, no death, no suffering – right now, we still hurt each other, we still experience disappointment and pain, we still die. Sin affects every decision, person, and moment in our lives. Sometimes we may be tempted to ask God why our time on earth can’t be just a little bit more like heaven. But that’s not what God wants for us right now.
“He never promised us that He will deliver us to our personal definition of the good life. Rather he has promised that he will use all his tools at his disposal to complete the work of redemption that he has begun in our hearts and lives.”—Paul Tripp
The real definition of the good life – here and now – is very simple. It’s so simple, in fact, that we often miss it. The good life is walking with Jesus and becoming more like him! As followers of Christ, every day we are being conformed to the image of Christ, and the reality is that suffering is part of how God shapes our character. It may not feel good at the time, but we know from God’s Word that
“suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope” (Romans 5:3).
One day we will stand before the throne and all will be right. No more sin or death will plague us! But for now, we must trust that God is working all things for our good, even when it’s hard. Success in witnessing is simply taking the initiative to share Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit and leaving the results to God. Don’t chase the good life that seems good for a while but perishes. Choose the real good life that transforms you more and more each day into the person God made you to be and look forward to an inheritance than can never perish, spoil or fade! (1 Peter 1:4)